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MVDs: Most Valuable ‘Dawgs From Notre Dame Victory

Notre Dame v Georgia Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images

A ton of players had a hand in helping the Georgia Bulldogs emerge victorious over the Notre Dame Fighting Irish on Saturday night at the Upside Down at Dooley Field (tm). But as best I can judge, these were the ones whose contributions loomed largest. They are your MVDs: the Most Valuable ‘Dawgs from Georgia’s 23-17 win.

Offense: D’Andre Swift. This was not as easy as picking the player with the most statistically impressive night. One could argue that Jake Fromm’s all but error-free game kept the contest in hand when a single turnover could have put it in jeopardy. Lawrence Cager’s 5 receptions for 82 yards and a touchdown deserves serious consideration as well. But in the end it was Swift’s tough carries early and big runs late for a total of 98 yards on 18 carries that stood out.

Defense: Divaad Wilson. The Irish offense found plays when it needed them for much of the first half. I don’t think anyone had as much to do with that coming to an end as Wilson. His juggling interception set the Bulldog offense up at the Notre Dame 22 yard line for the game-tying interception. He had another key pass break up and added 3 solo tackles. All in all it was a solid coming out party for a player coaches have been raving about for over a year and who now looks fully back from the ACL tear that took away almost all of his 2018 season.

Special Teams: Rodrigo Blankenship. For what feels like the 177th week in a row Rod the Kicker is your special teams MVD. Kirby Smart noted in his postgame remarks that you probably only see a player like him once or twice in an entire coaching career. I’d say even that may be an overstatement. Rod’s field goals of 31, 40, and 43 yards were all pressure kicks. He continued his record streak of 177 straight extra points without a miss or a block. It’s no stretch to say that Rodrigo’s pink cleats may end up being the toughest shoes to fill for Kirby Smart in 2020.

Until later . . .

Go ‘Dawgs!!!